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CAMMALLERI OFF TO HOT START

by Staff Writer / Los Angeles Kings
“I love London.”

Those were the words of forward Michael Cammalleri after scoring two goals in the Kings’ season-opening 4-1 win over the Defending Stanley Cup Champion Anaheim Ducks on Sept. 29 from the O2 in London, England.

Cammalleri tallied a goal in the second game of the two-game set as well, giving him three scores in two games on the young season, and three of the Kings four goals.

“It helps your confidence,” Cammalleri told reporters on Oct. 3. “It sucks to start a year pressing and wondering when that first goal is going to come.”

Last year, Cammalleri also got off to a fast start, scoring three goals in his first five games of the year en route to posting career highs in all offensive categories, with a new high in goals (34), power-play goals (16), game-winning goals (5), assists (46), points (80), power-play points (37), plus/minus (plus-5), shots (299), games played (81) and time-on-ice average (18:02).

Two of his goals have come on the power play, after leading the Kings in power-play goals, assists, points, power play points and shots a year ago.

“Cammy is a scorer,” Cammalleri’s linemate Dustin Brown said. “That line is a pretty dangerous line when we all get going.”

Cammalleri plays on a line with sophomore sensation Anze Kopitar, who posted two assists in the opener, and Brown, who has one helper on the season. The trio has combined to score 3-3=6 with 15 shots on goal.

Brown also set career highs for goals (17), power play goals (13), assists (29), points (46), shots (195) games played (81) and time-on-ice average (18:42) a year ago.

“I don’t think Kopy and I have played to our potential as of yet,” Brown said. “We are all shooters, protect the puck and make plays, it is all about getting that cohesiveness.

“I think we are going to have a pretty good year.”

Kopitar, who finished third in the NHL among rookies in assists (41), points (61), power play points (29), average time-on-ice (20:32) and average power play time-on-ice (4:37), agrees.

“We know our roles on the ice and that makes it special. Hopefully we will play the whole season together,” Kopitar said. “We are really starting know where we are going to be on the ice and that really helps a lot.”

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